Neil Lennon confirms interest in signing Celtic loan star Scott Bain & prepares for Hampden hearing

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BY ALAN TEMPLE – @CCP_Sport

NEIL LENNON has confirmed that he is interested in snapping up Celtic loan star Scott Bain at the end of the season.

Bain, 26, enjoyed a memorable debut for the Hoops on Sunday, with his late wonder-save from Josh Windass – allied with Alfredo Morelos’ stunning miss from the rebound – sealing a 3-2 win over Rangers and capping a composed display.

The fine performance did not surprise Lennon, who took the goalkeeper to Easter Road on loan from Dundee, only for the player to subsequently make the move to Parkhead in the aftermath of a serious injury to Craig Gordon.

Nevertheless, Bain made a positive impression on Lenny and, with his contract at Dens Park set to expire at the end of this season, remains interested in signing the stopper. Celtic and Hearts have also been credited with an interest in a permanent move.

“It was good to see Scotty play so well,” Lennon said. “It was a great experience for him and he handled the occasion very well. For an Old Firm debut it was very good.

“He looked very assured and he had a bit of luck, if you want to call it that, at the end, and he recovered well from the Morelos rebound.

“There is an interest [in signing Bain] from us and we made sure Scotty realised that before he left.

“Even in the short time he was here we were very impressed with the way he was around the place and his attitude in training and the attributes he has.”

Lennon, meanwhile, will appear at Hampden in person this morning as he attempts to avoid a touchline ban.

The Northern Irishman was hit with two charges after being sent to the stand by referee Kevin Clancy during Hibs’ 2-2 draw with Kilmarnock last month, with the first relating to ‘misconduct’ on the sidelines and the second coming after his post-match comments, which included describing the officiating as ‘Mickey Mouse’.

“I’m going [to Hampden] early so I hope it’s not too long a day,” smiled Lennon. “We will go along and put our case across and see how we get on.

“You normally get a fair hearing so I would expect nothing else – I’m not pre-empting anything, though.

Should Lennon be found guilty, he could be banned from the dugout for Friday night’s visit to St Johnstone, where he fully expects a thorough examination of the Hibees’ European aspirations.

With his side just two points behind third-placed Aberdeen, Lennon added: “Both Rangers and Aberdeen have been very strong and to be around them at the minute is really good going. We have shown very good form since the start of the year and we want to try to maintain that momentum.

“But we know it won’t be easy on Friday. St Johnstone are a team who can beat anyone. They had a great win at the weekend and a great draw at Celtic Park a few weeks ago, they have been to Ibrox and won so they are a dangerous team and we haven’t beaten them yet.”

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